Language without emojis

Clo S. of This Too Shall Grow went two weeks without using emojis and chronicled her experiment:

On the first day of my experiment, I was already worrying that I wasn’t warm enough, or wasn’t conveying my reactions well enough. On the second day, I missed using emojis. It hadn’t even been 48 hours, but the good stuff comes when you push through, so I kept at it. On the third day, finally, I started feeling good about this. I wrote:

“This is actually cool, I don’t know if I want to get back to emojis. Maybe I just needed to get the habit out of my system.”

No shit, Sherlock.

In the first few days, I did have to edit emojis out of my messages, as I was using them reflexively. During this experiment, I pondered about the importance of emojis to convey banter, being concerned that without them, I’d simply come across as mean.

I could probably do two weeks but it’d be tough and I’d worry if I was coming across as cold and distant. But if you asked me to stop saying “lol” and “haha” at the end of sentences? Big struggle. I was talking to a friend the other day who’d asked me how I was and we talked about how we used “lol” to cushion the blow of expressing less-than-pleasant feelings. It’s a crutch, for sure, and emojis add a certain flavour to our digital conversations, for good or bad.

Emoji related: Standards Manual’s new book dedicated to late 90s Japanese emojis

Standards Manual’s new book dedicated to late 90s Japanese emojis

Hamish Smyth and Jesse Reed’s publishing imprint’s release a new book celebrating the emojis designed by Shigetaka Kurita for Japanese telecoms company Docomo. 176 symbols were originally created and according to their research, Docomo came up with the idea during a time when small amounts of data could be transferred between devices. The emojis are pretty archaic in comparison to the ones we use now but they’re wondrous to look at.